PUPPET-MAKING: How to ENGAGE even the shyest STUDENTS IN SPONTANEOUS ENGLISH CONVERSATION - a way of letting go of one's fears
My summercamp was nearing the end and I was running out of ideas. Then I saw Buddy in a photo with his friend Juan Alberto Lopez Uribe and all the wonderful activities they had done at Gallery Day Camp in Varese, Italy. I contacted Juan for advice and he reminded me of things I had done with my children in days-gone-by - PUPPET-MAKING - plus he gave me an excellent tip: use a hot glue gun!
What amazed me more than their creativity (I made a puppet there and then out of an old sock as an example) was how they started making their puppets talk spontaneously to each other without my prompting them. Even the shyest students crept out of their shells (mine were aged 3 - 12) and spontaneously improvised little dialogues with each other. I presume they felt free to express themselves through the puppet thereby having no fear of making mistakes or being judged - it was the puppet speaking and not them.
A really fun and linguistically productive activity: during puppet-making I ensured they used imperatives such as "Pass me the scissors, please!" after which they enjoyed "chatting" to each other via the puppets.
Thank you to Juan for all your advice!!
Check out Juan's link to his videos:
Try it out and have fun!
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My name is Susan Brodar, born in London into a multilingual family and brought up bilingual English / Italian.